Okay, I didn’t post this on Sunday or Monday, like I had planned to, but it’s not as late as the last couple. I am getting back on plan with the running–the early part of last week was still not as consistent as it should be, and my long run was 9 miles, not the 10 I had originally hoped to do, but on the whole I’m feeling good. The weather has been unseasonably warm, which has helped.
What I did not do this past week was take a photo of (or during) any of my runs, so an alternative for visual interest seemed necessary. A few years ago I was a member of a private group blog where we frequently shared YouTube videos of songs that we wanted to introduce others to or just had a desire to talk about, and this came to mind when I was thinking about what else I might want to add to this post. While running, I often listen to podcasts lately, but I also have–and enjoy making–huge running-themed playlists, which for the most part means a mix of music (all genres) that will get me through a run if it starts feeling hard, typically more poppy than what I normally listen to, but sometimes it’s the lyrics or something else that catches my attention and makes it seem good for running.
I like a variety of religious music and add them among the many other songs on my playlists. These are usually more traditional hymns, but not really sung in a high choral kind of way (Robert Shaw doesn’t work for running, for me)–maybe more of a folk song feel, if that makes sense. One less traditional one (but the feel of it fits right in) is House of Gold, one of the religious songs written by Hank Williams, and specifically this version of it by The Secret Sisters. Well, not this version, as this is a live version, but the one from their album.
Anyway, that song came on this time during my long run, and managed to be the main song that came up that I remembered afterwards, as it has been stuck in my head off and on since. I like the lyrics, I like the harmonizing on this version, obviously it is catchy, but beyond that it struck a chord with what I’ve been thinking about lately and how the church can or should be a source of strength in what’s going on today (and again, I don’t mean to make this a political blog, but I still cannot believe my country elected Trump). In particular, and again, I don’t understand it, the focus on fear (and absurd ideas of being a winner over all else and being out for oneself and dominating and all the rest, not to mention the direct denial of any responsibility for the plight of the refugee) seems directly contrary to the message of the gospel (this piece by Obama from back in 2006 also seems relevant to what I am getting at). But back to the song:
“People steal, they cheat and lie
For wealth and what it will buy
Don’t they know on the judgment day
That their gold and silver will melt away
I’d rather be in a deep, dark grave
And know that my poor soul was saved
Than to live in this world in a house of gold
And deny my God and doom my soul
* * *
What good is gold and silver too
If your heart’s not good and true
Sinner, hear me when I say
Fall down on your knees and pray”